B-complex and Hardwood Propagation

immobilus(9a)February 3, 2013

I had the worst luck with propagating plants by either hardwood or softwood cuttings. I've tried crape myrtle, photinia, texas sage, butterfly bush, etc., and it seems like everything has failed.

I've had success, however, after I started moistening the growing medium with b-complex and water mixed in a blender. Even my photinias which had rotted came back to life after I removed them from the medium, knives off the decay, then soaked the ends of the hardwood in the mixture for 12 hours. I noticed a small amount of cane sugar also helped.

Has anyone else found this? What's the science behind it, if anything?

Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo
ken_adrian Adrian MI cold Z5

when i googled b complex.. all i got was vitamins..

care to better describe what you are talking about???


ps: what made you think to grind up your daily vitamin and feed it to your plants???

    Bookmark   February 4, 2013 at 9:17AM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo
brandon7 TN_zone(7)

It's a pretty commonly used snake-oil potion. People talk about it pretty frequently in the Trees and Shrubs Forums. When used for transplants or cuttings, I think its only benefit is to the wallets of the sellers.

Linda Chalker-Scott's The Myth of Vitamin Stimulants

CO State Coop. Ext.'s Beware of Gardening Myths

AZ Coop. Ext. on Vitamin B-1 and Root Stimulators

UC, Davis article

    Bookmark   February 4, 2013 at 9:15PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

It worked for me, and cheaper than B1 rooting stimulant. I'm telling you, had hardwood leafless crape myrtle sticks in soil for months. No roots and started rotting. I pulled them out, cut off the rot with a knife, left them in a mixture of b-complex, cane sugar, and a little apple cider vinegar, and they had roots within two weeks. They haven't leafed out, but I'm going to fertilize the cuttings this weekend with a little miracle grow.

    Bookmark   February 7, 2013 at 4:14PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo
brandon7 TN_zone(7)

There are way too many variables for us to know what happened in this particular case. That's one reason scientific studies (where variables are controlled and control-samples are used to help eliminate unknown variables) are so valuable. Just about all snake-oil potions have their believers/advocates, but that doesn't make them reliable. Anecdotal evidence has little real meaning until you have a lot of it or until it is gained while at least partially following good sound scientific method.

    Bookmark   February 7, 2013 at 10:58PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

Ive heard good things about giving cuttings a superthrive bath (diluted of course) Prior to hormone and placement in rooting medium.

    Bookmark   April 25, 2013 at 1:46PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

Application of vitamin B-1 (thiamine) to root systems of whole plants does not stimulate root growth. This myth arose from early work on plant growth regulators, called auxins, which were mixed with vitamin B-1. Further research throughout the last half of the 20th century investigating the application of auxins to root systems suggested that auxins may stimulate root growth, but that vitamin B-1 on its own does not. Delving deeper into manufacturer claims, many rely on early research (late 1930s and early 1940s) which has been refuted by subsequent research and/or research done on plant roots excised from the mother plant or grown in artificial media.

Here is a link that might be useful: B-Complex busted/explained.

    Bookmark   April 29, 2013 at 9:44AM
Sign Up to comment
More Discussions
wanted cuttings for Weeping Willow for Postage
Will pay postage for some cuttings that will grow in...
Grafting Black Walnut
Has anyone done this? I'm going to try this spring,...
How much light for cuttings?
How much light needs a bed for cuttings? If I put some...
Coleus Propagation/Pinching
Hi, Here are my new, first time growing from seeds,...
Cathy Cokley
Plant Propagation, AHS
American Horticultural Society: Plant Propagation. Most...
© 2015 Houzz Inc. Houzz® The new way to design your home™